Turkey's Erdogan bids farewell to Merkel after 16 years

Turkey Germany

ISTANBUL (AP) — Angela Merkel’s final visit to Turkey as German chancellor on Saturday saw two of Europe’s longest serving leaders pay tribute to one another as Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan hosted her for farewell talks overlooking the Bosporus.

Erdogan had been in office for more than two years when Merkel came to power in 2005. Since then, they have built a relationship based on pragmatism that has weathered several crises.

“I hope that our successful work with Mrs. Merkel will continue in the same way under the new government,” Erdogan said at an Istanbul news conference.

The leaders discussed Turkey’s relations with Germany and the European Union, as well as Syria, Libya and the eastern Mediterranean, where Ankara’s interests have collided with Europe's.

However, Merkel has often adopted a conciliatory approach to Turkey, emphasizing the common interests of Turkey and the West.

After admitting hundreds of thousands o